Short Stories

50 Word Thursday #36 – How many Roads?

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He travelled alone, his pack on his back,

stumbling along the dusty old track,

though he’d naught to his name,

he felt glad, all the same,

for he had some things he’d sure hate to lose,

A tune in his head and a good pair of shoes.

Promises of youth had turned traitor and fled,

Replaced by the certainty of another road to tread.

He built his fires in a thousand places

and remembered the love on a good many faces,

and slept on the banks of rivers.

wrapped in a coat to hold back his shivers,

 The grass grew over his tracks,

time took its toll leaving no time to relax,

 but he knew where they were when he came again

his memories sharp, with feelings of pain,

And though he’d travelled,  long and far,

he stopped by the roadside and took out his guitar.

And strummed, his voice clear, his face gave a frown,

and sang, “How many roads must a man walk down?”

His tenor tones rang out as he grimaced and grinned,

but found no answer at all blowing in the wind.

How many roads to forget what he saw?

How many roads?

Always one more.

[200 Words]

Copyright: Kristian Fogarty 10th September 2019

 

This poem was written for the 50 Word Thursday Challenge which ends Wednesday afternoon, so you still have time to take part if you want to. Click on the link below:

https://talesfromthemindofkristian.wordpress.com/2019/09/05/50-word-thursday-36/

 

I have also included the following word prompts:

 

https://wordofthedaychallenge.wordpress.com/2019/09/10/traitor/

https://ragtagcommunity.wordpress.com/2019/09/10/rdp-tuesday-guitar/

 

 

 

 

 

Love, Unrequited? – A humorous love poem.

I wrote this poem the other day, but I have now added a final stanza that makes it a bit happier. I wished I could say that this poem is semiautobiographical, or at least the final bit,  but I’m afraid it isn’t. 

 

Cupid pulled back his bowstring

At his target, he took aim,

He hit me in my broken heart

Now I don’t feel quite the same.

 

It’s all a bit of a puzzle,

I’m not sure I feel so neat,

I don’t seem to sleep so well at night

And I can’t bring myself to eat.

 

I’m staring at adversity,

And productive, I am not,

Cupid! Why did you do this to me?

It was a cruel malicious shot.

 

For while you shot me well and good,

And my heart is now a flutter,

You didn’t bother to make a match

My love lies in the gutter.

 

So, Cupid please, get off your knees

And have another go,

Either cure me of this love disease

Or send me my Romeo.

 

And the new bit…

Cupid, you’re a splendid bloke,

For services, you should be knighted.

Because despite my fears and anguished tears,

My love turns out to be requited.

 

Copyright: Kristian Fogarty 21/July/2019 updated 24/July/2019

 

I have included the following word prompts:

https://ragtagcommunity.wordpress.com/2019/07/21/rdp-sunday-puzzle/

https://wordofthedaychallenge.wordpress.com/2019/07/21/target/

FOWC with Fandango — Productive

https://onedailyprompt.wordpress.com/2019/07/21/your-daily-word-prompt-adversity-july-21-2019/

https://wordofthedaychallenge.wordpress.com/2019/07/24/unrequited-2/

 

In Search of Happiness – A collaborative poem by Beckie of Beckie’s Mental Mess and Kristian of Tales from the Mind of Kristian.

What is this thing called Happiness?

I search and search, but I confess

That some days of searching high and low,

it feels as if,  happiness is suppressed

No matter where I am, how far I go.

Feeling Lonely, lost and dispossessed. 

My heart, mind, body, and soul often thinks, is this a test?

I know happiness is out there, I have to believe.

but while I endlessly search without sleep or rest, 

this cruel world is ever ready to deceive. 

Though challenges are around every corner,

the search for the secret to happiness must be achieved.

Or is life just a meaningless empty space?

God’s creative vision totally misconceived?

This questioning in my mind is a disgrace,

God would never allow me to continue being this peeved.

Yet when the darkness holds me in its embrace,

I cannot but feel bitterly aggrieved. 

With gritted teeth, I become red in the face,

Am I worthy of happiness to be received?

and yet, before I fall and sink without a trace

a ray of hope lifts me, a miracle to be believed. 

This warm fuzzy feeling as if my heart is being embraced,

a feeling washes over me, I hope I’m not being teased.

As happiness emerges from a forgotten deep place

The tormenting brooding darkness is finally eased. 

God lent his hands and darkest clouds soon were erased

The sunlight poured through and the negativity soon ceased.

For now, the battle ends leaving just an aftertaste

I have fought off once again that dark depressive beast. 

There is light at this terribly long tunnel, and so I race

my longing for happiness, my running towards it increased.

I discover, at last, that life is a mad steeplechase

and this thing called happiness is like a strange feast. 

 

Beckie and I have been passing this poem backwards and forwards taking it in turns to write additional lines. I think it has worked out really well. Many of you may have followed the process all along, but it is nice to have it all together in one place.

I am so proud of this poem that Beckie and I have created, we worked really well together and made a great team.

I hope you like this poem.

 

Finish the Story #11 – The Recruit.

I have been tagged by Teresa, The Haunted Wordsmith in one of her brilliant Finish the Story Challenges! I do really enjoy these, you never know where the story will end up taking you.

Click on the link below to see her original post:

https://thehauntedwordsmith.wordpress.com/2019/05/17/finish-the-story-2019-11/

The Rules:

  1. post the story as you receive it
  2. add to the story (or finish it, up to the writer)
  3. tag another person to continue the story (unless you finished it)
  4. Have fun!

Part One – by The Haunted Wordsmith

Adam was like any other eighteen-year-old boy and soon found himself standing in the middle of the training bay being subjected to the drill instructor’s ridicule. It wasn’t his fault the quarter didn’t flip on the old mattress, but he accepted his punishment anyway. He didn’t have another choice.

Ever since the revolution began, more and more troops were needed. There were even whispered rumors of lowering the age to thirteen if you were from a poor family. The government paid dearly for your life. That money could help support the family.

After completing fifty push-ups and parading around the bay in his underwear, Adam and the other recruits headed outside for training. The morning was dedicated to basic weapons and enemy language skills. Many of the recruits were already fluent, but the training was the same. Adam excelled and only realized his mistake when he was called into the Commander’s office that afternoon.

“Take a seat,” Commander Flint said, pointing toward a chair in the corner of the room.

Adam did as he was told and caught his breath as two governmental agents entered Flint’s office. One look from them and Adam knew he was in danger.

“That him?”

“That is Private Adam Ripple, yes.”

“Come with us,” an agent ordered, flashing his sidearm and a warning glance.

Adam stood. “What is this all about?”

The agents stared at him. The one nearest him replied, “…….

Part Two – My Contribution

“You’re a bit of an anomaly, you know?”

Adam couldn’t help feeling a bit cynical. He knew he wasn’t anything special. He was just a kid from the wrong side of the tracks, sent into the army to get him off the streets and to help fight this war that many now felt was unwinnable.

“Me? Apart from an ability to get myself into trouble, I can’t see what makes me any different from any other shmo around here. I’m pretty ordinary.” Adam laughed nervously.

One of the agents bent down and pushed the dark glasses down his nose, fixing Adam with an Icy blue stare. “There’s many a true word spoken in jest, lad. Two things mark you out. Your ability with languages which is by far the best we’ve seen in some time, and the fact that you could blend in anywhere. You’ve finished at this prestigious military academy” he paused to glance out of the window at the makeshift camp, to emphasise the sarcasm in his words. “You graduate as of today. Tomorrow you’re going underground.”

The agents grabbed an arm each and practically dragged him out of the commander’s office and into the back of a black van.

Before he knew it he was……

End of part two.

 

Now, who shall I consider for the next part? Who enjoys this sort of challenge?

I think I will nominate Li of Tao Talk.

Anomaly

 

Have fun 🙂

 

I have also included the following word prompts:

https://ragtagcommunity.wordpress.com/2019/05/17/rdp-friday-graduate/

https://onedailyprompt.wordpress.com/2019/05/17/your-daily-word-prompt-cynical-may-17-2019/

FOWC with Fandango — Anomaly

https://wordofthedaychallenge.wordpress.com/2019/05/17/jest/

 

 

 

Harmful Ignorance – A poem

Fantasy

He gazed upon a sight so great,

this Citadel made to fascinate,

if he lingers longer he’ll be late,

and that would never do.

 

He wore the robes so thick, so warm,

they were his apprentice’s uniform,

And kept out the cold and winter storm,

that he had struggled through.

 

His quest was nearly at an end,

to reach the city and find his friend,

to finish his training and then defend

his home from what he knew.

 

In his ignorance he’d released

A dark creature, an evil beast,

upon the living, it will feast.

It was all his fault, it’s true.

 

He must become a mighty Mage,

a Sorcerer skilled with wisdom sage,

and face this creatures dreadful rage.

to defeat and then undo,

the harm that only ignorance can do.

 

This was written for the What do you See? challenge:

What do you See? Feb/26/2019

 

I have included the following word prompts:

https://ragtagcommunity.wordpress.com/2019/02/26/rdp-tuesday-fault/

FOWC with Fandango — Uniform

https://onedailyprompt.wordpress.com/2019/02/26/your-daily-word-prompt-fascinate-february-26-2019/

 

 

 

 

 

Manic Mondays 3-Way Challenge – So Hungry are the Damned – A Dark Poem

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This poem was written in response to Laura M Bailey’s challenge. See Link:

https://alltheshoesiwear.wordpress.com/2018/10/01/manic-mondays-3-way-prompt-damned/

You may also wish to read my previous 3-way challenge story because this one follows it:

https://talesfromthemindofkristian.wordpress.com/2018/09/24/manic-mondays-3-way-challenge-personal-scars-a-story-in-less-than-100-words/

 

So Hungry Are the Damned

 

He lured her to his lair

in that dark, secluded glade,

without fear, without a care

she danced to the tune he played.

 

He admired her tender form

so lovely, so full of grace.

Her body, soft and warm, 

then he slowly turned her face.

 

he bit into her neck,

to harvest her blood, so hot.

The red stains now bedeck

where diamonds soon forgot. 

 

Now she’ll join him as his queen,

in his realm, that darkest land, 

Envy not, those fiends, unclean,

so hungry are the damned

 

Copyright: Kristian Fogarty 01/October/2018

 

https://wordofthedaychallenge.wordpress.com/2018/10/01/glade/

https://onedailyprompt.wordpress.com/2018/10/01/your-daily-word-prompt-harvest-october-1-2018/

 

 

 

 

Everything Stops for Tea – Murder Mystery Grand Finale

I started writing a murder mystery some time ago, This is the final chapter.

If you’d like to read this story from the beginning, click on this link:

https://talesfromthemindofkristian.wordpress.com/2018/07/11/the-start-of-it-a-short-story-with-familiar-characters/

Everything Stops for Tea

She had only taken one sip of the tea when the doorbell rang yet again. It was an impudent ring and it didn’t surprise her at all when Alice opened the door and her great-nephew bounded in.

“Afternoon Auntie, I got your note” Charles beamed at her then looked around at the gathered assembly. “What’s this all about Aunt Audrey? Did you want to make up a four for Bridge? That’s not really my game, more of a Cribbage man myself.”

“Just be quiet Charles and sit over there” Audrey pointed at a vacant chair next to Lord Halifax.

Audrey stood up and cleared her throat.

I have asked you all here to discuss the unfortunate deaths of Elsie Taplow and Claudia Halifax.

Audrey couldn’t complain she hadn’t received due attention. Several pairs of eyes were locked on her.

“Why didn’t you tell me you were going to do this?” Sir Alfred was clearly taken off guard “We were supposed to be working together.”

Standing at her full height, Audrey’s blue eyes flashed, she had never looked more alive.

“I couldn’t trust you fully. You could have very well been the killer. You came to call on me very early on that morning when poor Elsie’s body was found. You could have just come from killing her. I’ve seen it before, an old policeman, feeling obsolete and no longer useful. They go off the rails a bit. They want to make themselves important again, make themselves relevant. So why not create a murder to make them more relevant?”

Sir Alfred looked quite pale as he sat there looking up at Audrey.

Continue reading Everything Stops for Tea – Murder Mystery Grand Finale

Sunday Afternoon Reading – My Fantasy Story Part 23.

I was posting instalments of the Fantasy story I wrote 17 years ago every Sunday and Wednesday afternoons. The most observant amongst you may have realised that I haven’t posted an instalment in some time. In fact, the last one was posted last Friday, the 17th of August.

Well here is the next part. I hope you are enjoying it.

If you want to read it from its genesis, here is the link:

https://talesfromthemindofkristian.wordpress.com/2018/05/26/a-fantasy-tale-part-one/

 

Part Twenty-Three

Piotr Drake had not been enjoying himself. No, not at all. He was not in the best of moods. He had been travelling on the road for several days, since leaving the City of Savarias, on horse back and dressed up like a Mage. This had presented a couple of problems for Piotr. Firstly, that despite being a coachman he was not at all a good horse rider. He was fine with horses when he was sitting up high and they were harnessed to the coach and he had the reins and his whip. He found sitting on them quite unbearable. Truth be known he was not at all fond of horses. Riding them, he felt that the horse was more in control of the situation than he was. It took all his strength and stamina to keep the horse from straying from the road to have a munch of some tempting thicket. The way Piotr gripped his reins you would have thought he was riding a fierce stallion. Actually the horse was a particularly docile example and had been christened by its original owner, ‘Plodder’.

Continue reading Sunday Afternoon Reading – My Fantasy Story Part 23.

The Wind Sheds No Tears – Part Five

This is a part of a longer story that I have been writing over the last few weeks. 

See here for the last part of the story, which also contains links to all the others, if you want to read more:

https://talesfromthemindofkristian.wordpress.com/2018/04/19/the-wind-sheds-no-tears-part-four/

Part Five

The next day Pablo woke early. The sun was just coming up over the horizon, its light slowly ebbing into the dark night sky, hiding all its stars and turning it blue and getting brighter and brighter towards the east.

He put a small pack together, a change of clothes and a few simple belongings, he didn’t own much. He also put on the silver St Christopher charm necklace that his mother had given him. He didn’t usually wear it as the memories of his mother filled him with that longing for her touch that would never come. It was a charm to protect travellers and he was going with his Uncle Carlos to the City of Valencia. Likely, he would need its protection now.

Continue reading The Wind Sheds No Tears – Part Five

FROSTY

The Word of the Day is Frosty,

I hope this word inspires you to write a story or a poem. Happy Saturday.

Word of the Day Challenge

The Word of the Day is FROSTY

Write a Poem, story or anecdote, inspired by this word.

Please create a pingback to your post by including a link to this page in whatever you are posting.

If you want to participate create a pingback to link your post. Not sure how to do that? See how to create pingbacks here.

https://en.support.wordpress.com/comments/pingbacks/

Most Importantly, Have Fun.

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50 Word Thursday #49

The Latest 50 Word Thursday Challenge is out, click on the link below to take part in this picture writing challenge, this week hosted by Deb Whittam of the blog Twenty Four. Have fun. 🙂

Twenty Four

Hi All,  last week Kristian had us considering elephants, a sturdy topic and if you missed the results you can check them out here, now onto the serious stuff:

The Rules:

  • Find the muse within the photo or line provided and follow where it leads. It can be a story, anecdote, poem. Anything!
  • The Story must be between 50 and 250 words, in 50 word increments. (so 50, 100, 150, 200 or 250 words)
  • Link back to this post with the tag 50WordThurs so that everyone can find it, or post your response in the comments below.

I’m looking forward to what these prompts inspire, so here’s the picture:

Prompt Idea 2

“In his present mood he was not only shockingly dangerous, he was also in danger.” – Amanda Quick, ‘Til Death Do Us Part.

© Deb Whittam 2019

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Twilight

The Word of the Day is Twilight,

I hope this word inspires you to write something, a story or a poem, anything other than teenage vampires. 😉

Happy Thursday.

Word of the Day Challenge

blur-book-book-pages-880776

Today’s Word of the Day is Twilight.

If you want to participate, create a pingback to link your post. Not sure how to do that? See how to create pingbacks here. Please note that for the prompts that I publish, the comment box will now remain open for people who experience trouble with pingbacks. However, I won’t guarantee a quick response to actual comments, that would be left here. If you have questions, or ideas you’d like to submit, please use our “contact” page.

.

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50 Word Thursday # 48

Well, another week has just flown by! The 50 Word Thursday challenge has come to an end. Click on the link to see the post:

https://talesfromthemindofkristian.wordpress.com/2019/11/28/50-word-thursday-48/

 

The Rules:

  • Find the muse within the photo or line provided and follow where it leads. It can be a story, anecdote, poem. Anything!
  • The Story must be between 50 and 250 words, in 50-word increments. (so 50, 100, 150, 200 or 250 words)
  • Link back to this post with the tag 50WordThurs so that everyone can find it, or post your response in the comments below.
  • HAVE FUN!

Here was the picture:

DSC02280

And the Words: “I turned instinctively toward the menagerie because this was the cue for the elephant act.” – Water for Elephants by Sara Gruen

Here are the fantastic stories that were written for last week’s challenge:

 

The elephant cried.

 

50 Words Thursday # 48

 

https://debbiewhittam.wordpress.com/2019/12/02/50-word-thursday-48/

 

Deb Whittam, of the blog Twenty Four, who created this challenge originally, has agreed to co-host this challenge with me. I am honoured to hand the baton over to Debbie, who will post this week’s 50 Word Thursday Challenge!

Deb, over to you 🙂

ADVENT

The Word of the Day is ADVENT,

Both because we are in Advent which marks the beginning or start of Christmas, but also the word Advent means the start of something wonderful and new. I hope you enjoy using this word in a story or a poem. 🙂

Word of the Day Challenge

The Word of the Day is Advent, 

Adventmeaning ‘coming’ in Latin – can be used generally to refer to the arrival of a notable person or thing.

Most commonly though it describes the period in the Christian calendar where congregations prepare for Christmas day

Write a Poem, story or anecdote, inspired by this word.

Please create a pingback to your post by including a link to this page in whatever you are posting.

If you want to participate create a pingback to link your post. Not sure how to do that? See how to create pingbacks here.

https://en.support.wordpress.com/comments/pingbacks/

Most Importantly, Have Fun.

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The Incongruous Overture – A Silly Poem

This was originally posted a year ago, but I thought it deserved another airing. 😉 

I hope you find it uplifting

 

At the Piano, he banged the keys

The audience fell to their knees

It was an Overture most grand

The most bravado piano playing

In all the land.

But something wasn’t quite

The way it should have been, that night.

For while the audience enjoyed the fuss

There was something quite incongruous.

The scene was electric, that’s all right,

But it was quite an awesome sight,

For while they wore scarves and hats,

They were all a bunch of alley cats,

And while it can be said, quite true

That alley cats like music too,

They don’t often like an overture,

There’s something else they much prefer,

Something Jazzy, Sassy, lots of beat,

Something to which they can move their feet.

But this lot sat and watched chief Pussy,

Playing Mendelsohn and then Debussy.

It all seemed like a glorious joke,

Then all of a sudden, I awoke

To the sound of my own cat’s scream,

It had all been a rather silly dream!

As if any cat would listen, acute!

They hate the piano, they prefer the flute.

 

Copyright: Kristian Fogarty 14/December/2018

https://wordofthedaychallenge.wordpress.com/2018/12/14/incongruous/

https://ragtagcommunity.wordpress.com/2018/12/14/rdp-friday-overture/

 

https://wordofthedaychallenge.wordpress.com/2019/12/03/uplifting/

Proposal

The Word of the Day is Proposal.

I hope you enjoy using this word in a story or a poem. Happy Sunday 🙂

Word of the Day Challenge

blur-book-book-pages-880776

Today’s Word of the Day is Proposal.

If you want to participate, create a pingback to link your post. Not sure how to do that? See how to create pingbacks here. Please note that for the prompts that I publish, the comment box will now remain open for people who experience trouble with pingbacks. However, I won’t guarantee a quick response to actual comments, that would be left here. If you have questions, or ideas you’d like to submit, please use our “contact” page.

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